Sellafield Limited has saved over £1 million pounds of taxpayers’ money by re-using 42 old fuel skips from an existing UK nuclear site.

The skips, which would have been broken up at the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority’s Chapelcross site in Scotland, were instead transported to Sellafield.

They will now be used for shipping over 750 tonnes of radioactive waste out Sellafield’s 60-year-old Pile Fuel Storage Pond (PFSP) to a downstream treatment plant.

"In the past, we’ve ordered in brand new Magnox skips which were expensive at almost £14,000 each or we’ve sourced them from elsewhere on the Sellafield site, but we couldn’t get them in the timescales needed," said PFSP waste manager Chris Mounsey, who came up with the idea. "Chapelcross provided the ideal solution – they wanted to dispose of their skips and we wanted a cheaper source of skips."

Sellafield Ltd said it has saved over £580,000 by re-using the Magnox skips from Chapelcross. Magnox Ltd has also made ‘significant savings’ by avoiding dismantling, transport and disposal costs.

Mark Steele, the NDA’s head of programme for Sellafield, said it is "very pleasing" to see collaboration across the NDA estate delivering significant savings [over £1 million] for the UK taxpayer.

The first 20 skips have already been delivered to Sellafield from Chapelcross and will start to be filled with radioactive wastes in the next few weeks.


Caption: One of the skips in use at Chapelcross